Saturday, January 29, 2011

This Sunset Brought To You By Tonight's Sponsor, God

It was a spectacularly beautiful day today, sunny, about 60 degrees!  And it's JANUARY!  This is pretty unbelievable to us but we enjoyed every moment.  I had to go do some errands and attend a class, but still had my windows cracked on the highway.  On the way home, it was nearing dinnertime and when I unloaded my car, this is what I came out to find:

And then as the sun went down further, it got even more beautiful:
And then there was a jet contrail that appeared:
Looks sort of like a shooting star, doesn't it?
The Eastern sky was nearly as pretty:
It wasn't as easy to capture on the camera.
Thank You, God! :):):)

Friday, January 28, 2011

Learning How To Play

It is so enjoyable to see these little ones learn to walk, staggering about, getting their balance and discovering the world.  On Wednesday, I had to replace the whelping pool with an ex pen and a board so Tabi could get in and out ok and pups could not escape.  This opens up more space for them, I decrease the blankie size and that gives them more room on the papers.  This is good because then they get up, wander to the papers and pee/poop.  It's early paper training at its best and will make it very easy for pups to transition to new homes, if they feel they can't hold it and the humans aren't paying attention, they can have a paper to address if necessary.
This is a little longer video, about two minutes.
And remember that three weeks prior to this, they were safe and warm in Tabi's belly.....

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Kentucky Quilt Trails

This was actually going to be my very first blog entry.  One of the things that I noticed when we moved here was that many barns had a big quilt block painted on them. When I investigated further, I found that it was actually painted on boards and attached to the barn.  Why?  There had to be a story.
And there was, of course, a story.  The Commonwealth of Kentucky (another story!)  has funded the Kentucky Arts Council with a grant to provide this as regional art.  You can read more about it here:
One woman began the project by painting a quilt block on her barn to honor her Grandmother, who was a quilter.  Friends who helped her decided that if they were going to do one, they might as well do twenty, and create a "driving path" so people could view them. From there, the project spread all over Kentucky.  
I have taken photos of these along Highway 163 and 90, which is a scenic highway.  The two above are not too far from my house.
The day that I took these it was overcast, so the colors are not as bright as I would like them to be.  I did this about a week after Thanksgiving.

I think it is so enjoyable to go down the road and see the different designs that mean something to each person.  Some people have even painted their own on the barns without going officially through the process to have one painted for them.
I love the idea and think it is so neat!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

What is it?

OK, I know what it is.  I think it's a Hobbit House.  It looks about the right size and has a front and a back door.  This was created by the goats down the way, they are Boers, quite sturdy and very serious goats.  They have a few new babies in the field, too.  But I was quite impressed with the Goat Art!
Anyone else want to venture a guess on what the goats were making?

Monday, January 24, 2011

Yesterday and Today

Yesterday we had to make a rescue run to Corbin, KY, to drop off Grace, a very sweet middle aged tri color corgi on the run to her new home in TN.  We enjoyed Dairy Queen with some very dear friends and got to visit for about an hour.  But before we left here, we had to tend to chores.  And after those were done, there was one little chore that still needed to be done.  One of the younger goats had not been feeling well so we had brought her up and put her in an ex pen in the breezeway, which is heated.  Gazelle liked this just fine!  She has had a shot of antibiotic, and although it has been reasonably decent out, the nights are pretty cool.  We didn't want to take a chance on her getting sick in a worse fashion.  But she needed to get back down so we could get on the road on our rescue trip.  Fastest way was to take a ride with Jerry:
She really enjoyed her ride to the barn!  This is how we get Jewel back when she comes up to the house and Jerry has actually ridden all over the property with her.  Of course, this is Jewel, and those of you who know her story know she gets anything she wants in life!
Today I came home from work and asked how the pups were doing.  Jerry said fine.  Kathy was over and she said fine.  So I went into the bedroom to get in my jeans and this is what I found:
Well, yeah, I guess she was fine, just not where she needed to be!  This is Diva and she must have had a good latch onto Tabi and when Tabi jumped out of the box, she must have still been attached....Nonetheless, the little darling found a warm and safe place and curled up to take a nap.  This is the second pup out of the box, the first was the small spot boy and I suspect the same thing happened.  That was at 2 weeks and 2 days, a new record for us, here!  Today is 2 weeks and 4 days.
Here's a closeup:
She was warm and happy but missing a feeding!  Now she is back with the others and I can see that in the next day or two, I will have to make a more secure place for the little ones.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Puppy Videos!

This is Tabitha feeding her babies.  They are just over two weeks old now and their eyes are open.  They have achieved Hamster status:

And here are the babies, just starting to get around and look at things and try to figure out the Big World they now live in:

I hope you all enjoy these videos!  More to come in a few days!

Friday, January 21, 2011

The Dream Home of all Corgis everywhere: Marrowbone, KY

Yep.  It's a real place!  It's about half an hour from here and I told Jerry if I'd been aware of it, I probably would have looked there for a home, too.  How Kentucky, to have an address of Marrowbone, KY!  It's almost as delightful as Buck Snort, TN, which is also a real town.  Ah, well, we are happy here in Summer Shade, which is most certainly an excellent name for a town.  I actually had someone ask me if it was a made up name and did I really live in a town called that!  It is real and is just a bump in the road, really.  They have a dollar store, a post office and a restaurant and I think a couple of gas stations.
Well, Jerry and I took a drive down the road to explore on Thanksgiving afternoon, after the feast.  It was overcast and really a bit gloomy but what a pretty road it is!  I made up my mind to go down that road again and I did, in December, and took some photos.  So here are some of them.
Marrowbone actually was the site of a camping place for both sides in the War Between the States.  Not the Civil War.  Nothing was Civil about it at all.  Or as some people from my past used to say, the "Wahr of Nawth'n Aggression".  :)  There isn't much on the Net about Marrowbone except as a passing mention of this camping place.  Here is the marker that is by the little stream that passes through the town.

Here are some photos of the little stream that was where they all camped.  It's really flat ground and there is a nifty little roadside park there.  I have thought of having a corgi picnic there, with it being Marrowbone, I'm sure it would be a hit!

I can't wait to see this spot when the leaves are out this spring!  The stream at this point was only about a foot deep, even more shallow in places.  Perfect for wading with corgis during the hot summer!
We have explored down the road as far as Burkesville, and want to go further.  I love driving around and looking at this beautiful area.
I do want to mention something that happened here in this town about a year ago, in March.  Apparently about 10 members of a Mennonite church here were killed on I65 near Mammoth Cave in a horrible auto accident, along with two others.  I guess it just devastated the town.  I was unaware of this until I was looking for some link tonight so you could all learn about Marrowbone.  What a terribly, terribly sad and tragic thing to have happened to such a close knit community. I am so very sorry for everyone who was touched in any way by this accident.
I am intrigued by the name and will try to find out where the origin of it came from.
Tomorrow I will share some more photos that I took along this road.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Ugly In Kentucky

I have found that, unfortunately, there are some ugly things in Kentucky.  Not many and I am not dwelling on them at all, because we are so delighted to be here and enjoying everything so much.  But here are some ugly things to see. First is the gas meter in my yard:
First, you would think that someone, somewhere, could come up with a cute design, maybe embed it in a concrete raccoon or maybe make it look like a little moonshine still.  Oh, no.  It looks looks like....well, shoot, I don't know what it looks like but will take suggestions as to what you all think it DOES look like!  And ugly grey to boot.  I may have to go out and paint it white with red candy cane stripes or something.  I could put a trellis on either side of it.  Or maybe just put a lot of decorative stone on it, in my interpretation of Beauty and Freedom.  So I am open to suggestions as to what I can do to hide it.  The winner gets the pint of moonshine in my refrigerator.  Yep.  That's another blog, though.
Oh, yes, it is right NEXT to the driveway where someone could nicely back over it and blow themselves to Kingdom Come. Sheesh.
Here is the next entry for Ugly in Kentucky:
Now all summer, I thought this was a nice little bush in the front yard.  But the fall came, the leaves fell and what did I find?  A stump.  Just an ugly old stump.  So what do I do with this?  Just cut the whole thing down?  Turn it into a birdfeeding platform on top of the stump?  Ugly, ugly, ugly.  At least it is off to the side of the front yard and not nearly so ugly and noticeable as the stupid gas meter.
Last is a gem that was actually in my house:
Ain't it purdy?  Why it was right there in our large bathroom. I could wash a passel of little kids all at once in there, and maybe that is why they put it in.  They call these garden tubs and they hold about 200 gallons or so.  Bearing in mind that I have a 40 gallon water heater and we have to buy our water now (as opposed to having a well here), I do believe it has never been used by anyone.  That lovely yellow shade was set off with deep raspberry bathroom counters (which have been replaced, also another blog).  To my great surprise, we were able to get this out of the house without cutting it to pieces.  We put it out on the road and in three days, it was gone.  Someone, somewhere has 1) A nifty Koi pond, 2) a pool for the kids to play in, 3) a water container for farm animals or 4) something to put in the annual Christmas parade.  For example, you could turn it over, paint it green and with a little creativity, it could be a Christmas turtle.  Now I've never seen a Christmas turtle, but hey, I'm open to new traditions and all.  After all, look at Kwanzaa.  Do they have turtles in Kwanzaa?  Well, they should.  They use a lot of green in their celebrations and I can just see a tasteful Kwanzaa turtle being featured in everyone's front yard for that holiday.
It took up a lot of space in the bathroom and when I have the extra money, we will put in either a bathtub there or maybe a whirlpool.  Now THAT would be purdy!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Our New Church

Yes, indeed, I knew there was a church down here for us.  One that would appreciate all my animals and welcome them into the fold, too.  A manger was good enough for Baby Jesus to come into the world and so I feel particularly like this church would fulfill my spiritual needs.  I can wear jeans and flannel and boots and no one would care if I brought a couple of dogs or a goat or two with me, just like Baby Jesus had.
Yep.  I think I've found where I want to go.  But we gotta get that front door fixed.

A week old!

Even though the pups were born a week ago on Thursday (today is Monday, so they were 11 days old today) I took some photos on their week old birthday.  Everyone is so excited, waiting for their pups to grow up!

In the third and fourth photo, to the right, the pup with the big spot is Diva, the only one named right now.  She is the smallest one but a mighty little soul is she!  She is going to be like Aisling, her great great aunt.  Aisling's full title is The Beautiful But Evil Yet Terribly Misunderstood Aisling.  Aisling says these pups are hers and it's so obvious since Diva is certainly her child.  She wants me to set up a puppy registry, she would like an iPad, DVD player and a 4 G whatever that is. She saw it on tv and so she wants one.  Aisling is Susan Lucci in a dog body.  She is a free spirit and does as she pleases, is incredibly intelligent and figures things out, particularly where there is food involved.  If you go to The Watching Story blog, you can look thru the old posts, there are a couple there.  I'm typing this on the way out the door to work so can't look it up right now, just wanted to get this up so everyone can ooh and aah over pretty pups. Anyhow, Aisling says they are hers and Tabi is just taking care of them for her.  On Aisling's last litter, she was trying to get the chickens to raise them for her.  :) 
Back to Diva, if she has a concern, she YELLS!  Where is my tittie?  I am COLD!  I am LOST!  And she peeps this mighty peep until some human somewhere comes tearing into the room and gives her what she wants.  She has climbed up on Tabi's neck and on her belly when Tabi sleeps on her back (open milk bar at that point, a place for everyone!).  She is going to be a little feisty one, I think, fearless and brave.  I find the little ones usually are more daring, for some reason.
I'll try to remember to come back and put in the links for Aisling's posts for those of you who have not read it.
Home, now, here are the two posts on Aisling:

Sunday, January 9, 2011

For this, they cancelled school on Friday

Yep, this is it.  The road on the way to work on Friday.  Apparently, people down here go into a frenzy if they hear the "S***" word mentioned on TV. They mob WalMart, water, milk, bread, sandwich meat.  Probably ought to (arter) get a couple of new thick winter coats, too, while we are about it.  At least enough food for a week, wait, make that ten days, remember the big ice storm of '09?  The above is what I usually call a "dusting" of snow, just a little bit, enough to stick but will be gone in a couple of hours.  They called school here in the county the night before because of the S word.
And that's not all, the kids went to school the Monday before Christmas and then didn't go back the rest of the week because of the S word.  Then they were off all the week between Christmas and New year's day.  Then off most of the week after, too, due to the S word. We had about 4" of snow on Christmas, it was pretty and just nice.

Above is up the road a bit, below is off our front deck.  OK, now this is serious snow for here. But most of it left in a few days. This IS our "cold" season down here, ranging from 23 to 46 degrees.
Here are the horses:
They did some running and frisking in the snow, they seem to like it a lot!  Right now we have about an inch, it did continue to fall overnight on Friday night and I had to go to one of the bigger towns here on Saturday morning.  Most of the roads were deserted until I actually got to town, then it picked up somewhat.
I think the big "storm" that is coming to the south of us will mostly miss us but bring some ice/snow to the states below us, TN, AL and Mississippi, Georgia.  We have a little predicted, less than an inch.
I guess I have to go to work tomorrow.

Friday, January 7, 2011

And the final count is.....

Well, she fooled me!  Tabitha got stuck under the dresser on Wednesday night.  I had to get Jerry up to lift the thing up while I dragged her out.  She very happily took to tearing up papers. And was one of those girls who doesn't pant, pace, drool, throw up and make a lot of drama about pups.  Just looking slightly worried, a few pushes and look!  A puppy!
Of course she made me lose a day's work, and we are in the middle of a project at work.  Ah, well, everyone seemed understanding and anxious to see photos this morning when I did go to work.
The final count?  Well we STARTED with a dozen.  Yep, that's right TWELVE puppies.  She was enormous...we saved 8 of them, they must have been so stuffed in there that they could not all survive the trip out.  But I am grateful for 8, there are several families who are happily awaiting news on them and hopefully I have the right pups for the right homes.

Tabi loves her little children.  Four girls and four boys.....

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Oh, she is soooo fat.....

This is Tabitha, who is due to have pups sometime in the next 72 hours or so.  She didn't finish her dinner tonight, and from her progesterone test two months ago, Saturday is the target day.  So I am not watching her too closely right now.  She has decided that under the deck would be a fine place to raise a family, though, and thank goodness we fenced that off some months back.
These photos were actually taken about a week ago, and she is much bigger.  According to her weight, she should have six but I think she will have 8.  She has given everything to her babies, she is eating but thin and so I believe she has more in there than I usually estimate due to weight.
She is literally dragging the floor!  Poor girl.  We are having a natural whelping this time, I loved the convenience of a planned c section but since she is due during the weekend, we will just let Nature take its course.
So soon there will be more little Kallista babies playing in the house.
Tomorrow the tile man will be here and hopefully the floors will be done in just a few days.  Jerry got the run in shed done today, the important part.  He will line it tomorrow with wood so that horses have a little more wind protection.  I'll try and get a photo of it to share with you all.
In the meantime, everyone say a prayer for Tabi, her babies and me.....

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Just a couple of pretty pictures!

This is another lovely Kentucky sunrise with some fog, etc, and Misty was standing out in the field.  I just love how these photos came out!

Dang I wish the back yard fence, etc wasn't there, looks like she is in a terrible pasture!  It's very secure and very nice.  But love the light!

And the floors look like crap.....

(I wrote this some time back, the front room floor is mostly in now.)
Well, they do.  And they have for a long time.  I mean, I will bet the carpets are 19 years old, just as the house is.  Rose, the former owner, wanted to do something with the floors but didn't get around to it.
Grey/taupe carpet and black and white linoleum in the kitchen. The kitchen really wasn't too bad.  The same carpet in the three bedrooms and blue carpet in one bathroom. The big bathroom has some kind of stick down tile that also isn't half bad.  But it's all going.
When Jerry got down here in late August, we tore up the carpet in all three bedrooms and put down Allure.  It wasn't hard to do but is hard to cut and Jerry was in charge of that.  I actually laid this stuff down and would highly recommend it to anyone who wants to try this themselves.  There is a knack to it but once you get it after ruining a few pieces, you will be fine.  It's a floating floor, a vinyl plank kind of floor and you get it at Home Depot, which has a huge variety of colors in it.  There are two sides of the plank that have sticky stuff sticking up and two sides have it sticking down.  So the planks basically are "glued" together by putting the up/down pieces together like a piece of velcro.  Lowe's has something similar except that the sticky part is really narrow, like 1/8th of an inch.  Not enough!  The Allure is about an inch wide on the glue strip parts.  
So far, the Allure has withstood several accidents by Hayley, who is 15 1/2 years old.  No one has puked on it, yet, but I'm sure that will happen.  After all, it's a household in which dogs outnumber humans.  And the #1 rule of dogs is....someone must puke at least once a week.  In any case, the floor has cleaned up beautifully.  Stay tuned and in 10 years I will give a report on the condition of the floor.
We started this in one of the smaller bedrooms.  The carpet was torn out and the staples pulled up.  Pulling up the staples was the worst thing about the job, I think.  Little buggers took quite a bit to get up.  Then we put down tarpaper as a vapor barrier and stapled that down.  Then the wood below the actual flooring, called Luan, and 1/4 of an inch thick, was put down.  Finally we started to lay the planks down. The grey/blue part is the "up" part that is sticky, on two sides.  On the opposite sides, the sticky part is down.  It reminds me of velcro, when it sticks together, it really sticks!  I had to pull it apart a time or two because I'd let just a very tiny "crack" inbetween and wanted it to be totally tight.  Man was that hard to do!
Of course, Hayley had to come in and "help".  She is 15 1/2 and once she paces about a little while, seems to find a good spot and so long as she is close to us, she is happy and goes to sleep.  We just kind of slide her around while she is asleep if she is in the way:
Here are some closeups of how it all looks:
We chose the same heat registers to go throughout the whole house.  While we were laying the flooring down, Hayley had a gift for walking around and "falling" into the vent holes.   We were bad and laughed at her... :) 
(Also written a while back while I tried to figure out how to load the pictures!)

Tomorrow is the big day, though!  Last month there was a sale on 13 x 13 inch cream colored ceramic tile at Lowe's and so I went and got something like 1,000 pieces.  That will do the main part of the house, the front/dining rooms and the kitchen and dinette (currently where the dog crates are) area.  And the little hall leading to the little bathroom.  I bought enough extra to do the baths, but they need some updating badly before we lay down tile in there.  We chose a darker grout, called chamois, and some decorative tile to put in the kitchen, just a bit, for emphasis.  We also got some tile the same size only in a lighter coffee color, to put in front of the fireplace to give the illusion of a sort of hearth, and the decorative stuff will go around the edge of that.
We will put down a vapor barrier, then the hardy board which will be screwed into the floor, then glue the tile down after cutting it and placing it.  It has to sit for 24 hours to dry, then the grouting goes on.  We hope to get the subflooring and glueing process done tomorrow, the grouting on Thursday.  And the sealing of the grouting done on Friday.  This will be for the front and dining rooms.  (This actually took quite a bit longer than we anticipated....but it is done now and looks fabulous!)
And here's the really pathetic part...our bedroom opens off of the front room. With no outside door.  We basically were looking at living in half of the house at once, one side has the bedroom/bath and front/dining rooms.  The other half has the kitchen, dinette area, tiny bath and two extra bedrooms.  Hmmmmmm....So one way we have a great bathroom and comfortable bedroom but no fridge.  The other way we have a fridge and a tiny little barely double bed.  And of course, the dogs' crates have to be moved from one side to the other.  And all the furniture goes...somewhere.  A lot probably in the front yard and please, God, don't let it rain!
So Jerry came up with a solution.  I don't know if it will work but it at least could make things easier.  We can climb thru the bathroom window at bed time.  Yeah, I know, it sounded stupid to me, too, until I thought about sleeping in my own bed at night.  And using the better bathroom.  And having a tv because the front room will be unavailable and no internet, either.  (sigh)  So I really think this could work.  I won't have to move my work clothes to the other side of the house, etc.  I don't think the dogs will be too happy, but Hayley can still sleep with us.  And she won't be too much to lift in and out of the window.
I hope I don't break my neck!
(Well, it ended up that we were able to go with a Plan B, thankfully.  The tile was laid up to half of the bedroom door so no climbing in and out of the window.)  And here are the photos:
This is the floor after the subflooring was all put down. Piles of tile over to the right hand side of the room, just some of it.  That's Jasmine lying on the couch.  And the little temporary computer table I was using.  It will be used as my sewing machine table when I get that far.
Wow, just a little bit different, huh? Wow, wow, wow!  Here is in front of the sliding glass door into the back yard:
Looking back across the room towards the kitchen.  The floor was about half done at this point.

How do you like the fireplace area?  Close ups to follow:
There is still scuzzy stuff on the tile, that needed to be mopped but I couldn't wait to take the photo!  And we have gas logs in the fireplace and I LOVE THEM!
We added a corgi to the picture for authenticity:
The only thing that is lacking is the baseboard.  Jerry has treated the grout with a sealer.  The baseboard is in part of the room so we could move the heavy furniture against the wall.  I'll send photos again when the room is done.
So this week the floor guy is back again and maybe in another few days we will have a completed kitchen!  Wheee!